Punjab Boxer Leaves Boxing to Start Strawberry Farming - Earns Rs. 9 Lakh / Acre

Just came across this story in The Tribune.

[li]Chetan Verma (18), junior-level national player, bid adieu to boxing and took to strawberry farming[/li]
[li]On a two-acre plot taken on lease, he reaped a profit of Rs 18 lakh[/li]
[li]On the other hand, a paddy farmer earns just Rs 80,000 from an acre in a year[/li]
[li]Having earned the sobriquet of ‘Strawberry Boy’, Chetan now aims to export the fruit to Dubai[/li]
[li]Currently, he markets the produce in cities like Amritsar, Jammu and Pathankot[/li][/ul]

Complete story

[size=140]Gurdaspur boxer strikes gold in strawberry farming [/size]
Ravi Dhaliwal, Tribune News Service
Gurdaspur, July 9

Eighteen-year-old Chetan Verma is brimming with youthful exuberance and has stars in his eyes. His passion of growing strawberries in this non-descript township is catapulting him to new heights.

Chetan who was part of the Punjab team that participated in the 2012 junior national boxing championship, one day decided to give up the sport he so passionately loved. He wanted to do something new and innovative, so he decided to take up strawberry farming in a small town like Gurdaspur. He risked his father’s savings and after two yields, he has now become the most sought-after young farmer in the town.

To begin with, the ‘strawberry boy’ visited the local Punjab Agricultural University Research Station to get knowledge on how to grow the fruit. He was exasperated after the officials there told him they had no inkling what strawberry farming was. Last year, he visited a relative in Solan (Himachal Pradesh) who gave him a couple of thousand young plants, which he transplanted on a well-irrigated two acre plot taken on lease by his father Rakesh Verma. Now after two years of hard work involving growing and marketing of the fruit in his own home brand ‘Zoot’, he is raking in profits unheard of by farmers who grow paddy and wheat.

“Nearly 32,000 plants can be grown on each acre of land. Each plant, on an average, costs Rs 6 or Rs 7. Add to each plant the cost of labour, sprays and the charges of land lease land and in the final analysis, an investment of Rs 10 is made (per plant). This means I have to invest Rs 3.2 lakh per acre. It is on this investment that I make Rs 12 lakh, which means I reap a profit of nearly Rs 9 lakh an acre,” he said.

Agriculture experts opine that raking in Rs 18 lakh from just two acres of land is a financially much more viable proposition as compared to traditional paddy-wheat growing farmers who, after incurring all expenditure, make just Rs 80,000 from one acre in a year.

The fruit is transplanted from September 15 till October 15 and it starts ripening in February and goes on till April. The Verma family markets the final produce in neighbouring cities like Amritsar, Jammu and Pathankot.

The young farmer has no qualms about quitting boxing at a time when he was beginning to make a mark on the national circuit. “I had a promising career ahead. But for some inexplicable reason, strawberry farming just fascinated me no end. I want to become a pioneer in this trade in the Majha region,” he averred.

Now, the youth has his aim set on exporting the fruit to Dubai where it commands three times more price than what he gets here.

Source: tribuneindia.com/2013/20130710/punjab.htm#7

The above said  is very nice to read and motivating.

Kindly discuss the economics of strawberry

Price per plant ?
How many plants per acre?
Time to harvest?
Weather conditions needed?
Harvest per acre?
Selling price?
Is it viable for doing around Bangalore?

Ashish Sharma



Many people fail because they try to copy others- Not realising that every one has a different question paper !. "


Very inspiring story… the risk he has taken made the difference.

But one statement puzzled me  " traditional paddy-wheat growing farmers who, after incurring all expenditure, make just Rs 80,000 from one acre in a year’.
Where in India a paddy farmer makes 80000/- per acre ?. IMHO even with bumper crop a paddy farmer might get 30000 per acre per year with the current
min support price by the govt.

  • Surya

Yeah, me too. Discount that to a lazy journalist who just made up a figure without checking through.

Provided irrigation sources exist round the year 2 short duration paddy and one medium duration paddy crops = 110 days +110 days +130 day = 350 days can be grown in a year with the respective seasonal yield of  2500 kgs + 2300 kgs +3000 kgs = 7800 kgs .Price @ Rs.12 per kg .Total income from paddy per acre per annum is Rs.93600 . The yield can be raised by 20 % through intensive cultivation 93600 * 120% = Rs…1,12,320 …

Yield calculation for well managed paddy field

No of plants per square meter at the spacing of  30 CM * 15 CM = 23 plants
Each plants produce average productive tillers of around 15
Each productive tillers produce an average number of grains 125
1000 grain weight of paddy , an average figure 15 grams for fine rice varieties 
Yield is arrived at 23 plants / sqm* 15 productive tillers* 125 grains * 15/1000 kg of 1000grain weight 1/10004000 = 2587.5 kgs / acre

When you select high tillering paddy varieties and wider spacing as in SRI rice planting spaced at 25 CM * 25 CM

The yield parameter will be as follows

No of plants per sqm = 16
Ave No of productive tillers= 35
Ave no of grain per tiller= 125
1000 gram weights for fine slender variety =15 grams

Yield per acre 163512515/10001/1000*4000 = 4200 kgs per acre per annum . We can give risk allowance of 20 % .so final yield per acre per annum is 3360 kgs …

For 3 seasons in a year in intensive cultivation A farmer can harvest 10080 kgs which @ Rs. 12 could fetch Rs.120960

So the journalist has presented right picture of annual  income from paddy